31 Aug '17, 1pm

Magnetothermal Genetics: A Fourth Tool in the Brain-Hacking Toolbox:

A scientist wanting to hack into an animal’s brain used to have three different tools to choose from: electric current, drugs, and light. Now there’s a fourth: magnetic fields. In a paper published last week in the open-access journal eLife , scientists at the University at Buffalo used magneto-thermal genetics to manipulate brain cells in mice, enabling the researchers to control the animal’s behavior. Magneto-thermal genetics has been previously shown to activate neurons in anesthetized rodent brains, but this is the first time anyone has reported using the tool to manipulate animal behavior, says Arnd Pralle , the University at Buffalo biophysicist who led the research. Brain hacking tools help scientists better understand the wiring of the brain—the arrangement of neural circuits and which ones control different movements and behaviors. These tools could someday lead t...

Full article: https://spectrum.ieee.org/the-human-os/biomedical/devices...

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